New Jersey Winters: 6 Tips for Safe Driving

With chances of snow returning on Tuesday, it seems New Jersey’s winter may never end. Ironically, science seems to support this idea. According to Nature Communications, severe winter weather may last longer and become more frequent with the rising temperatures of the Arctic. In fact, “bomb cyclones,” or extreme snowstorms, are 2 to 4 times more likely in the northeastern part of the U.S. when the Arctic’s temperature is high.

So, how do you stay safe while driving? We’ve come up with 6 tips for safe driving on winter roads.

1. Remove the Ice on Your Car Before Driving

Before you set out on the road, make sure you use a scraper to remove all ice and snow from your car. If you don’t, as your car warms up, ice may dislodge from the vehicle while you are driving, potentially hitting vehicles behind you. Flying ice is a major hazard for drivers, and is considered a finable offense by New Jersey law enforcement.

If a police officer sees your car covered in ice, he/she can fine you up to $75. If flying ice from your car causes an accident, you could be fined up to $1,000 and be held liable for any injuries the driver sustained.

2. Turn On Your Lights

Snow, even during the day, can impair your view of the open road. Turning on your low beam headlights will help you identify and avoid hazards such as black ice or debris.

3. Slow Down

Ice and snow often riddle northeastern roads during the winter. If you hit a patch of ice, your car might lose traction. This could easily cause an accident, or at the very least, frighten you as a driver. To maintain traction on your car, and keep your drive smooth and safe, it is important to slow down. Driving at or below the speed limit greatly increases your tire traction and allows you to brake or stop in less time.

4. Give Yourself Room

Slick road conditions make it harder to brake or drive safely. Creating a greater distance between you and the car in front of you ensures you have plenty of time to stop without risking your safety.

5. Steer into the Skid

We’ve all heard this before, but it’s true. Turning your steering wheel “towards the skid,” or in the direction the rear of your car is sliding, allows your vehicle to realign safely. Don’t forget to take your foot off the gas pedal and the brake pedal, as both can cause an even greater loss of traction.

6. Be Prepared

Follow the Boy Scouts rule, and be prepared. You should keep a number of items in your car in case you get stuck in hazardous winter weather, including:

  • Non-perishable food
  • Water
  • Blankets
  • Jumper cables
  • Flashlight with working batteries
  • Matches or lighter

Stay hydrated, and call local law enforcement to notify them of your location. Conserve your car battery by limiting your heater and radio usage, but keep your engine running. Extreme weather conditions can make it nearly impossible to start an engine.

If it is safe, remain in the car until help arrives. If you are unable to move your vehicle to a safe location, such as the side of the road, turn on your hazard lights, move away from the car, and keep warm.

If You Sustained an Injury from a Winter Accident, Call Our Woodbridge Car Accident Attorneys Now

At Palsimano & Goodman, P.A., we have more than 100+ combined years of experience and have helped clients receive thousands of dollars in compensation. We work with you to analyze the evidence in your case and build a beneficial strategy on your behalf. Our Woodbridge attorneys are dedicated to getting you the settlement you deserve.

Contact Palmisano & Goodman, P.A. at (732) 709-4400 to begin discussing your case.

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